DEER PARK - Sept. 11 first responders and workers sickened by the toxic dust at Ground Zero will now be able to see the effects of a bill that gives $2.75 billion in aid to them.
The U.S. Congress passed the legislation last year, ensuring long-term dependable federal funding for research and treatment programs. The money will also be used to monitor the health of emergency responders and recovery workers for about five years.
Today, however, was a bittersweet day for the family of retired NYPD Capt. Barry Galfano, who was laid to rest in Deer Park after losing his life to multiple forms of cancer.
Galfano is one of more than 1,000 first responders who have died from illnesses possibly related to working at Ground Zero.
Despite failing health, Galfano traveled to Washington, D.C. to push the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which went into effect as he was being laid to rest.
"In Barry's case, the Zadroga bill came too late," says friend Glen Klein. "It wasn't able to help him out."
The bill is named after James Zadroga, a police detective who became ill after taking part in recovery efforts at Ground Zero.